Rangers men get presidential pardon over youth’s killing

Published: January 7, 2018
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Screenshot from video which captured the murder of Sarfraz Shah in 2011. PHOTO: EXPRESS

Screenshot from video which captured the murder of Sarfraz Shah in 2011. PHOTO: EXPRESS

KARACHI: President Mamnoon Hussain has granted pardon to Rangers personnel who had been sentenced to life imprisonment over their involvement in the June 2011 killing of a youth inside a public park in Karachi’s upscale Clifton area.

The pardon was granted by the president in exercise of his powers under Article 45 of the Constitution, sources in Sindh’s Home Department told Sindh Express.

Will resign if I can’t find out who deployed Rangers at court: Ahsan

“After receiving the pardon orders from the President House, we have communicated with the IG prison, and the convicts may be freed any time from Karachi’s Central Jail,” said a senior official of the Home Department.

Despite several attempt, IG Prison Nusrat Mangan and the superintendent Karachi Central Jail refused to talk on this issue.

The Rangers personnel had killed Sarfarz Shah, 22, considering him a robber out to deprive people in the park of their belongings.

Footage of the killing was filmed by a cameraman from a private TV channel who was at the park to cover an event. The video which was later aired by all news channels sparked widespread public outrage.

The outrage was so extreme that the government took the rare step of removing the provincial chiefs of Rangers and police after the then chief justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Chaudhry took notice of the killing.

On August 12, 2011, an anti-terrorism court in Karachi handed death penalty to a Ranger trooper Shahid Zafar for the ‘extrajudicial’ murder and life imprisonment to five others, including Sub-Inspector Bahaur Rehman, Lance Naik Liaquat Ali and constables Muhammad Tariq, Manthar Ali and Afzal Khan.

The park’s watchman, Afsar Khan, was also jailed for life in the case.

Faizabad crackdown handed over to Rangers

However, the convicts challenged the decision in the Sindh High Court (SHC), which rejected the appeal in January 2014 and retained the death sentence and life imprisonment for everyone, except Lance Naik Liaquat Ali.

Later, the convicts filed appeals in the SHC against their conviction, requesting the court to set aside the ATC judgement.

However, the appellant bench of the SHC rejected the appeals on January 21, 2104 and upheld the ATC ruling of sentencing Shahid Zafar to death after finding him guilty of pulling the trigger.

But in August 2014, the Supreme Court commuted the death penalty awarded to Shahid Zafar when his family appeared before the court and told them that the victim’s family had reached a compromise with them. Later, the court commuted the sentence to life imprisonment.

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Reader Comments (9)

  • Ahmad
    Jan 8, 2018 - 12:16PM

    Well, there we go again. Funeral Prayer of Justice will be held in Karachi Once more! Recommend

  • MHS
    Jan 8, 2018 - 12:20PM

    The President didn’t do anything in his entire tenure and now he freed murders honestly before I used to feel sympathy when looking at his ugly face but now you can see the evil on his face! Who pardons murders!Recommend

  • Raisani
    Jan 8, 2018 - 9:20PM

    “Travesty of Justice”
    It’s time to see those social activists who launched rant for Shahzaib murder case, let’s see how they dare to take up this pardon issue and also if there will be any suo-moto into this case. Recommend

  • Azad
    Jan 9, 2018 - 3:18AM

    Everyone knows, which institution forced the President to pardon these murderers. A classic banana republic, we have here!! Recommend

  • Haji Atiya
    Jan 9, 2018 - 3:58AM

    @MHS:
    He’s not “ugly”, just homely like Maryam Aurangzeb.Recommend

  • S Zafar Iqbal
    Jan 9, 2018 - 5:40AM

    Those who have officially pardoned these cold-blooded murderers have made themselves accessories to the murder of an innocent soul — a sin grave and unpardonable.

    Do they expect to escape the ultimate #Justice on the Day of Judgement?Recommend

  • S Zafar Iqbal
    Jan 9, 2018 - 6:42AM

    Pardoning the cold-blooded murderers of an innocent, unarmed, civilians makes Pakistani rulers accessories to the murder of an innocent sole — a sin, grave and unpardonable.
    Do they expect to escape the ultimate #Justice on the #Day of Judgement?

    Now officially #Justice is dead in Pakistan.

    The Presidential pardon is an official declaration that the ordinary citizens have no right to life, liberty and justice in this un-democratic, un-Islamic, criminal-ruled Pakistan.

    With rulers like these does the nation need any more enemies?Recommend

  • concerned
    Jan 9, 2018 - 11:03AM

    Rangers no doubt had a difficult job back then and even now. But that does not justify murder of innocent unarmed people. The ranger who murdered in broad day light need to be punished, for justice and for future deterrence.Recommend

  • Silent Mode
    Jan 9, 2018 - 2:33PM

    Well done Mr.PresidentRecommend

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